SAILORS from a Royal Navy minehunter have visited their namesake village ahead of an Armed Forces Day event.

The crew of HMS Hurworth visited the primary school at Hurworth on Tees, near Darlington, in a Meet the Sailor event.

Forty-two members of the ship’s company visited the school and chatted with pupils before visiting Rockliffe Court, a retirement community, to help with gardening tasks.

They will spend this evening (Friday) taking part in a cricket match at the village cricket ground, attended by local residents.

The crew will spend tomorrow (Saturday) in Hartlepool when they will be involved in the town’s Armed Forces Day events, including a parade alongside colleagues from the army and RAF, as well as veterans and cadets.

A busy weekend will be concluded with a return to their adopted community in Hurworth to attend a service at All Saints’ Church, Hurworth.

The service includes the presentation of a German Iron Cross bravery award to the ship’s company. The cross was won by the pilot of a German Junkers 88 bomber shot down by a previous HMS Hurworth in the Second World War.

Lieutenant Commander Eleanor Stack, the ship’s commanding officer, said: “The ship’s company of HMS Hurworth has been keenly anticipating the visit to Hurworth-on-Tees, with whom we have a long-lasting affiliation.

“Due to the continued presence of the mine countermeasures squadrons in the Gulf, the opportunities to conduct such visits are rare so we are very pleased to be able to spend a few days with the people of Hurworth, interacting with all the people who have supported us so well over the years.

“It will be fitting to spend Armed Forces Day in Hartlepool, the port where HMS Hurworth conducts her hometown visits and where we are hoping to bring the ship into next year following the culmination of a successful re-propulsion programme.”